Sweden, Part 1

One month ago I was still on vacation in beautiful Sweden. I think you all — yes, even you– should go there if you have a chance. Maybe not all at once. Don’t crowd them. Try some Swedish pizza–see what you think of it.

I took about 700 pictures during the ten-day trip. Not bad — I’ve taken half as many pictures of leaves in various states of decay in a single day in my backyard. So, while I was excited to take pictures in a new(ish) place, I was there to relax with a very special Swede, and I only wanted to be taking pictures, like, 60% of the time, not 85%. 700 pictures is still a fair number, though.

It should surprise no one that most of the pictures are of landscapes and plants. A couple feature cats. (Well, one cat.) I will never stray far from my roots, even if I am over 3,000 miles away from my geographical ones.

This first set of pictures was taken one of the first days when I went on a little solo ramble about a nearby beach and the forested path that butted up against it.

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3 – I like to think of this as a sweet throwback to my river wandering days in southern Minnesota (still in progress). Realistically, if I got this set of pictures mixed up with my other sets, I would never be able to tell that some of them were taken in Sweden. I had to consciously tear myself away from weird junk on trees and remind myself to take pictures of things I don’t get to see that much, like, you know, the ocean.

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4 – But I just really like wooded paths, so there are a lot of pictures like this.

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5 – A curiously dry swampy area with wild irises

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6 – One of the narrow paths leading from the woods to the beach

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7 – This is one of my favorite pictures from the trip.

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8 – Wild iris

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9 – Big, beautiful single roses in white and pink everywhere. They just love this scruffy landscape, I guess. They were on the beach, in the woods — everywhere.

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10 – Inside a rose

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11 – Rosy roses

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12 – Oh yeah, that’s what I came here for. We went swimming once the whole trip (weather was not permitting, but we did it anyway).

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13. I wasn’t lying when I said there were roses everywhere.

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15. Looking across the water towards industry.

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16. Inside a white rose

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17. Unopened white rose bud is rosy pink

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18. It’s woodland…but it’s grassy…but there’s sand! How many more landscapes can this girl handle?

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19. A few nice, wizened old trees here and there

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20. I don’t know what this grass was, but I loved how its flowers looked. Like little chunks of oatmeal nodding to and fro. Mm, oatmeal flowers.

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21. Path o’ mystery

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22. Fern ‘n’ friends

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23. Why’s it so irresistible to take a picture of a path curving slightly, oh, why

More woodland adventures

Here are some more pictures I took this weekend in the woods and around my parents’ yard.

The first three pictures are the seed pods of false indigo (Baptisia), which is a great plant with year-round interest. Why, you can even rattle the branches and the seeds shaking in their pods could double as a fine maraca! That’s fun, right? Sure!

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I wonder about the black, scaly patches on this tree. I don’t know if it’s lichen, a fungus, or something else.

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IMG_7733aIT’S ALIVE

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IMG_7748Ferny fern!

Camping?

I went camping a couple weeks ago. I went four hours away to take all the kinds of pictures I like to take, just in a different setting. What are the pictures I like to take? Pictures of leaves, duh.

These are my camera shots. Later I’ll update with the ones from my phone. Pumpkin pictures coming at some point, too.

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1. The leaves were a-glowin’ especially against the misty gray weather we experienced the first couple of days.

 

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2. Still life on kooky, dangerous steps that every lakeside site boasted

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3. A partially skeletonized leaf for Halloween.

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7. Pretty undulations in the pine bark. Not sure which pine.

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9. My dad returning from a boat ride

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10. We spent some time at the dock. I spent equal amounts of time taking pictures of weeds there as I did fishing.

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12. Dogwood

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13. Sumac

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14. Sumac

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15. A nutritious snack.

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16. On the trail through the oh so stately trees

December 1st

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Pretty little flower

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Eastern red cedar bark

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Honeysuckle and tree

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Blade of grass and raspberry cane

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Branch with lichen

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Branch with lichen

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Raspberry cane with bloom

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Sunburst of an echinacea

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I like the undulating form of this flower

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Look! An M

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Barberry

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Repeating leaves

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Tall bellflower

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This is an old sage plant on the plant equivalent of a scrap heap

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Bright grass

The woods still exist

Between the heat and the mosquitoes, the woods have been so unappealing to visit, but the spot on our property overlooking them is a nice compromise. The bugs were nonexistent today, and no expedition gear had to be worn in order to reach the spot, so that was nice.

Ostrich fern

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June 11th pictures

Mosquitoes.

That’s about all the substantial commentary I’ve got. I walked down to the river yesterday for the first time since about mid-May. In that time, the mosquitoes have moved in and they suck out your soul in addition to your blood. There are also nettles up to your armpits. This is just nature’s way of saying, have fun!

1. There were these violet-y plants by the riverside that were just beginning to shed their petals.

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March 14th pictures: maple bud madness

Today was a glorious 68°F but it felt warmer. Late afternoon I noticed that many of the Norway maple flower buds in the front yard had begun to open. And that was the thing that happened today.

(1) A few branches of the newly flowering Norway maple and (2) one of the inflorescences close-up.

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